Newspaper Columns from the New Britain City Journal


Resolutions for the New Year!

Happy New Year!  Every year there are those resolutions that by the end of the third week in January are tossed aside like road-kill.

Most resolutions are to lose weight, stop smoking, or drinking and to get organized.  I have to do only one of those and I will let you guess which one.  But for the rest of you who need help with getting organized I have a few great organizing tools to help get you organized quicker, easier and prettier.

Reisenthel makes the coolest storage boxes that are beautiful to look at on a shelf or in your closet. It hides items (I store my summer shoes in one of them) that you want hidden away but in the loveliest way.  They come in three sizes, large (20.1X11.6X16.1 inches); medium (16.1 X 9.8 X 12.6 inches), and small (14.2 X 7.9 X 10.2 inches).  All fold flat when not in use and come in Fleur black, sand and flora. You can buy them at these websites:  or

There is a new Shark on the horizon (it’s safe to go into your kitchen again) it’s a 2 in 1 VAC then STEAM cleaning system.  It’s a complete cleaning system for hard wood and tile.  It’s lightweight, fun to use and it works—which is the best thing when you buy a product and it works. It makes the tile in my bathroom look almost new again—a feat when you think the building I live in was built in 1960. Too bad the shark 2 in 1 VAC then steam won’t clean the walls as well as it cleans the floors.  You can buy this at

But the best organizing tool out there is one calendar that works for you. I love my Franklin Covey calendar and it’s really the only one that has worked for me—and I have tried them all: the online ones, apps for my droid and other specialty calendars.  But a new one that works for me is called the Family-Time-Mine ( –there is a large area to write so my handwriting fits and I do not have to write so tiny I can hardly read it.  There are areas to make lists and perforate the list to take it with you and of course there are stickers to make looking at the calendar fun. Now, if only it would fit into my Franklin Covey binder I would be a very happy camper.

Have an Organized Day!


Organizing the home library; staying on top of it all

Dear Les Is More:

I love all my books but I can never find a way to keep them without collecting lots of dust and forming an eyesore in my home? How would you suggest clearing out my piles without losing my loved reads?



Dear Sandy:

Every book you read you feel close too, however Sandy, you have to be strong and only keep the ones you love and the ones you know you will read again. But, I have a better idea.  How about buying a Kindle for 139 dollars through and buying ebooks for genres you like but don’t love. If you are a big murder mystery person, then buy the books from your favorite authors, but use the kindle to read books you know you will never want to own the paper copy. You could always buy what you know you will love, and then go to this place every city has called the library.

Dear Les Is More:How do I stay organized all the time in everything?

Thank you! Gen

Dear Gen:

That depends on you. If you want to be organized you will be.  You will find a home for everything you own and put it back when you are done. You will weed out everything that is unnecessary in your home and donate everything you do not love.  However, you need to want to do it. It’s just like losing weight. It takes work. Welcome to life.  


Spouse is unorganized; how to start with a remodeled kitchen

Dear Les Is More:

My wife does not put anything away at all. It is left where she left it—I am always cleaning up after her and I am at my wits end.



Dear John:

I’m so sorry about how you live. But I believe if you bought a label maker and made a home for everything in its place-maybe, just maybe you can help your wife get organized. Label what you can, and put baskets with labels were you can. This will alleviate at least 75 percent of the clutter.   Maybe she is so busy that she does not have time to put anything away…so every night before both of go to bed, go through the home and put things in their proper place. Good Luck.

Have an Organized Day

Les is More


Dear Les Is More:

I have a new remodeled kitchen, but where does one start?

Thanks, Dee


Dear Dee:

That is wonderful.  Put all of the items you do not use weekly, or even monthly at the top of the cabinets and label them so when you are opening them you can see the label-since you might not see the top of the item.

Put all of your dishes above or to the right of where the dishwasher is, and put your mugs, cups and all coffee/tea supplies above where you make your tea or coffee in the morning.

Most of all have fun with redecorating your new kitchen. Look at magazines and see what they have for inspiration and always have a drawer just for your chocolate stash.


Perfectly good TV's & getting rid of clutter

Dear Les is More:  Just bought a new 50 inch TV so what do I do with the big 32 inch—it’s still good and in working order…

Thanks, Sal


Dear Sal:

Congrats on buying the mega TV. You can give it to a few charities around town, how about the Boys & Girls Clubs or the Friendship Center? Put it outside your home with a sign that says working TV-FREE.  If you want to make money, tag sale it, craigslist it or donate it and take a tax donation. But don’t just put it in the dump—that‘s wasteful.

Have an Organized Day!


Dear Les Is More: Is there a reason to get rid of my clutter-I mean besides the obvious?



Dear Rhonda:

There are a few reasons to get rid of your clutter. First, you will feel better about you and your home. Second, you will feel more energetic (having clutter around brings down your energy level.) Third-and one of my favorite reasons: you will find money, checks, gift cards…trust me on this—you will find money and it’s hidden in your clutter. In fact, most homes have about $2,000 dollars worth of items you do not use in your home.  Fourth, you will have more time.  Looking for miss placed items takes time, and always looking for things takes time. If you have your keys in the same place all the time, you will not waste time looking for your keys.

Without clutter, will be happier, you will wiser and you will be richer.

Have an Organized Day.


VCR's and downsizing your stuff

Dear LesisMore:

I am moving my mother into a condo. We are keeping the best furniture and putting the rest in storage—but what else can we do with the stuff?


Dear Claudia:

With respect to my friends who own storage facilities- This is a waste of money! Go through the furniture pieces again and decide among your family if anyone wants anything else. Then, bring the rest to a consignment store /antique store/junk store. Or, have a good old fashion tag sale. Bring in a family member or professional organizer who has no attachment to your items. They can help you go through the stuff and give your great suggestions on what to do with them.  Have an Organized Day.

Dear LesIsMore:

What can I do with all of my VCR Tapes?  I have so many of them, but I don’t want to just toss them out.


Dear Steve: You can do a lot of your VCR tapes. First keep the ones you like and watch over and over again—then you can donate them to places in New Britain that would like them. How about donating them to the Friendship or Klingberg  Centers?  If they are in good condition and you just want to take the tax donation, give them all to Salvation Army. But, if you want to keep them then buy a VCR to DVD recorder to turn them into DVD’s.  Then, donate or sell the VCR’s and you will now have all DVD’s. Have an Organized Day.